10 must-read SFF releases to make October your best reading month yet

The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E. Schwab. Image courtesy Tor
The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E. Schwab. Image courtesy Tor /
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The Midnight Bargain by C.L. Polk

Witchmark author C.L. Polk is back with another magical story, one with romance and politics weaved into it. The Midnight Bargain promises to tackle sexism within its pages, presenting readers with a tale of a woman torn between her power and her love

The woman in question is Beatrice Clayborn, and she lives in a world where marriage comes with a price. Despite having magical powers, once Beatrice is wed, she’ll receive something called a marital collar — and it will take away her abilities forever. She’d much rather become a Magus and study magic as the men of this world are allowed to, but her family begs her to pursue a match and an opportunity to pull them out of hardship.

To make matters more complicated, while Beatrice is seeking out a way to become a Magus in spite of it all, she becomes besotted with someone who’d make a worthy husband: Ianthe Lavan. The book’s summary suggests she’ll then have to make an impossible choice between Ianthe and her dreams of becoming a Magus:

"“The more Beatrice is entangled with the Lavan siblings, the harder her decision becomes: If she casts the spell to become a Magus, she will devastate her family and lose the only man to ever see her for who she is; but if she marries — even for love — she will sacrifice her magic, her identity, and her dreams.”"

It’s unclear how Beatrice will get out of this predicament — if she will at all — but readers who pick up The Midnight Bargain are surely in for an emotional whirlwind of romance and adventure.

The Midnight Bargain is available now in ebook, print, and audiobook formats.